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Student Perspectives
The Student Perspectives blog is a fresh and realistic snapshot of the life of veterinary medical and biomedical science students.
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"Handling the Problem Horse" Wet Lab

"Handling the Problem Horse" Wet Lab In the word of veterinary school, November is one of the busiest times of year. To add to our already-full schedules, a lot of student organizations are hosting wet labs in November. A wet lab is an educational opportunity outside of the classroom for students to gain experience in different areas of veterinary medicine. Often, it will involve a hands-on component, where students are actually able to practice skills, such as ultrasound, suturing, palpation, joint injections.  It’s a chance for students to jump in and get their feet wet—perhaps this is the origin of the name. This last weekend, the student chapter of the American Association of Equine Practitioners hosted their annual “Handing the Problem Horse” wet lab. I am an officer of the club and the event was being organized by my best friend, so I cleared my weekend to make sure the event went smoothly. For this event, we flew in Dr. Mark Fitch of Boulder, Colorado. Dr. Fitch is a ... (Read More)

Finding the Joy: One Saturday at a Time

Finding the Joy: One Saturday at a Time As first-year veterinary students, one of the most important things we can do to unwind is “find the joy.” This phrase lingers in the back of our minds as we cycle through the seemingly endless supply of course objectives that outline our preparations for anatomy, histology, physiology, and immunology exams. While it’s necessary to hone in on these subjects and ensure we understand the fundamental topics that underscore clinical medicine, it’s just as important to take a step back and remind ourselves of what intrigued us about a veterinary career in the first place. Participating in clubs is one of the best ways to remind myself of the fascination I have for this field and the variety of work that can be done by a veterinarian. My undergraduate degree largely focused on primate behavior, so I was especially excited to participate in the Saturday trips offered by the Laboratory Animal Medicine club this semester. So far, I have been able to get ... (Read More)

Healthy Living in Veterinary School

Healthy Living in Veterinary School Third year is just flying by! It seems like we are busier than ever—between classes, junior surgery, and clubs. However, as a student, it’s important to take time for yourself, and this includes taking care of your mind and body. It’s really easy to justify making a poor choice for dinner or skipping your workout for the third time this week when you tell yourself “I have a big test, I’ll do better next week.” The truth is there is always going to be another test, or quiz, or group project. School is important, and as veterinary students, we have worked very hard to get here and want to do our best. However, we cannot excel in school or life if our bodies are not fueled properly and if our minds are foggy. While eating healthy, well-balanced meals daily is a great goal, we are sometimes so busy that we grab what we can on the go.  Instead, I try to eat “clean” as often as I can. This may mean packing healthy snacks, such as fruits, nuts, a... (Read More)

It's Beginning to Feel A Lot Like Finals

It's Beginning to Feel A Lot Like Finals Midterms have passed, and all seems well: grades are in check and preparations for registration for spring classes have already begun. As hectic as this semester has been, I do not want it to end. But, I cannot wait for the next one to start. Taking 17 credit hours has definitely taken its toll on me, but I’ve learned to balance it all and not lose my sanity. Halloween (my favorite holiday) has officially passed, and the weekend was great, including a great trip to Austin and attending a haunted house called the House of Torment with my friend. Finals are now around the corner, but how can I worry when the Christmas spirit is already rolling in? Decorations are being put up, and the holiday music is playing. Even when exams are just a couple weeks away, how can I not be in a good mood? Now you can’t forget the eggnog—I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t bought some already. With that I bid those who are reading adieu, and may you learn to a... (Read More)

The Calm Before the Storm

The Calm Before the Storm Now that midterms have come and gone, I have the smallest of breaks in tests for the next two weeks. This is a time period I like to call “the calm before the storm.” I always feel that once midterms are over, the rest of the semester flies by. I have enjoyed my semester so far. One of my favorite aspects about this term is shadowing at one of the local animal clinics. A huge aspect of applying and getting into veterinarian school is to make sure to have as many veterinary and animal experience hours as possible. One of the ways to get an ample amount of hours is by shadowing a veterinarian. The clinic where I currently shadow is a mixed animal practice. There are two veterinarians on staff along with a few veterinary techs. I mainly follow the work of the head veterinarian, who also happens to be a Texas A&M graduate. I spend my Monday mornings, Thursday afternoons, and Friday mornings at the clinic; I look forward to each of my shifts. I ... (Read More)

Veterinary Ethics

Veterinary Ethics It’s hard to believe I am already halfway through my first semester of veterinary school.  Simultaneously, it is equally as hard to believe that I’ve only been in Texas for just over two months.  With all of the new information and tasks assigned to us on a daily basis, my class begins to lay the foundation for our veterinary career, and time seems to race while also standing still. While the classwork has been a bit of a struggle for me, I am continually reminded why it is I am seeking a veterinary degree. Whether it is the opportunity to practice administering a physical exam, one of the clinicians taking the time to bring students on patient rounds, or participating in herd work, there are many chances to get practical experience and remind yourself why you are studying hard every day. For me, the reminder came in the form of an ethics session this past week. The 1VMs stayed late after classes to meet with practicing veterinarians,... (Read More)

Test after Test

Test after Test As my first round of tests ended, my second round of tests started the next week. If you’re lucky, your tests have been spaced out, with time to relax and gear up again. If you’re like me, however, you have tests every week with no time for relaxation. Being a junior, I’ve learned how to handle this by now, but that doesn’t make it any more fun. Time management is the most important factor when dealing with a situation like this. Plan out a study schedule, and stick with it. I can’t tell you how much time I wasted studying as a freshman—and even as a sophomore—simply trying to figure out what I needed to study and in what order. Being a double major in biomedical sciences and entomology can be very difficult at times, but Texas A&M University has amazing resources that should be taken advantage of. For example, at the Academic Success Center you can meet one on one with an academic coach and learn how to achieve your dream GPA. Whether yo... (Read More)

Third Year of Vet School

Third Year of Vet School It has only been a month and a half into my third year of veterinary school, and I am still so excited about it. I felt like after about a week into my first and second years of vet school, I was feeling more overwhelmed than excited. My first two years of vet school were mostly bookwork and not much hands-on experience. Third year is finally the year I get to have tons of hands-on experience. I also get to choose which electives I want to take based on what I am tracking, which is small animal medicine. I am taking electives like cardiology, nutrition, oncology, dentistry, and behavior. Also, in third year we participate in junior surgery, which is my favorite class. We get to perform surgeries on different animals to practice our surgical skills. This gets us more comfortable with the procedures that we will be performing a lot in everyday practice. Next week, I get to perform my first surgery on a dog, and I am super nervous but extremely ex... (Read More)

A Fresh Start

A Fresh Start As the first week of October ends, my first round of tests is officially over. I cannot believe how quickly this school year has already begun to fly by. This is my second year here at Texas A&M University, with me being still an undergrad. It seems like just yesterday I was in high school looking up all the traditions and signing up for tours. It may be my second year, but I am still working toward getting the right college balance. As of yet, I find that to be the most important advice I could give to someone who's about to enter college. It's all about balance. You need to manage your time efficiently; you only have so much. Finding a balance between studies, work (if you have it), and fun is essential to a successful career here at Texas A&M. One great thing about our school is the fact that there's always someone willing to help. Last year, which was also my first year here, I struggled to maintain that balance. I struggled to ma... (Read More)

The Transition

The Transition The third year of vet school signifies the transition from academics to clinical veterinary medicine. This was officially celebrated at the white coat ceremony held at the end of our second year. This year my class has started participating in small and large animal medicine courses, a case-based course known as correlates, and junior surgery. The days of sitting in lecture from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. straight are over, and we finally get to put our studies to use with hands-on interactions with animals and clinicians. It has been a very busy but exciting semester thus far. We have learned how to perform dental and ophthalmic exams as well as how to assess lameness in our large animal species and how to perform on endoscopy in a horse. Junior surgery is a main component of life as a 3VM. We are able to focus on improving our surgical technique of suturing and handling tissue, maintaining sterility throughout procedures, and learning the ins-and-ou... (Read More)